Chapter 216: Joint Ownership
“Well, Hero of the Shield, did something happen? Yes.” (Slave Dealer)
“Last we met, I had the feeling you were avoiding eye contact. Does that ring any bells?” (Naofumi)
I go over to the Slave Dealer’s place, and ask as such with my arms crossed.
I’m not saying anything was his fault, but this man is one of the many reasons Motoyasu caused me such trouble.
“Absolutely none. Yes.” (Slave Dealer)
He’s putting on a business smile.
He’s definitely faking it.
“I’m thinking of leaving my gluttonous Filo Rial in your care for a while.” (Naofumi)
“T-that is…” (Slave Dealer)
“Of course, you’ll be footing the bill. I won’t let you refuse.” (Naofumi)
I have some political power now, but also this person is earning a lot by selling me slaves.
There’s no way the Slave Dealer would needlessly strain our business relations.
“I understand. Yes. The fact of the matter is that I did indeed offer some Filo Rials to the Hero of the Spear.” (Slave Dealer)
“So you admit it.” (Naofumi)
“He barged into the tent repeating the name of the Hero of the Shield’s Filo Rial, so I offered them to him as an experiment.” (Slave Dealer)
Ah, right. The Slave Dealer was trying to find out the conditions for a Filo Rial becoming a Queen.
But I had my hands full with my Glutton Firo, so I turned down his experiments.
I got my next Filo Rial much much later, and I left his care to Firo so nothing happened.
Could it be… I’m also at fault?
No no no.
I just didn’t participate in his research, and this isn’t my responsibility.
And the Slave Dealer was merely doing business. He sold his merchandise to the person looking for it.
I wonder how long ago he sold them.
The last time that I saw Motoyasu was… When Kiel and the others did their Class Up I think.
It was when I learned Portal Shield.
Back then, the Slave Dealer wasn’t there.
Perhaps I missed him and he later encountered Motoyasu.
I don’t really need to dig too deep into this.
“Regarding that matter, there is something I would like to propose.” (Slave Dealer)
“What is it?” (Naofumi)
“This morning, the Hero of the Spear paid a visit, and the contract ink with your blood is all gone.” (Slave dealer)
“What you say!?” (Naofumi)
Until this point, I never worried about its stock. It was something that naturally came with the slaves I bought.
Slaves aren’t free, and since testing the seal was easy, there wasn’t a risk of fake ink.
In this world, getting a slave without a seal is pretty pointless.
So Motoyasu is in possession of the Ink now.
“On the shelf where I kept the ink, I found several bags of Gold, and a sheet with a signature reminiscent of a Spear and a Filo Rial.” (Slave Dealer)
D-damn! When I had Firo persuade him, I never had her tell him that crime was wrong.
What Firo told him was to be kind and honest.
Because of that, he left money. But we never told him stealing was bad.
I thought that that was included in being honest, but I guess the term literally means simply being fair in one’s actions.
So Motoyasu raises his Filo Rials honestly, and leaves them under my providence.
I don’t know how he thinks, but in his mind, perhaps that is Honesty.
I hastily open up the monster management Window.
… The amount of names I don’t know has exponentially increased!
That idiot! He used my ink to contract his Filo Rials.
“I’ve heard of joint ownership of slaves and monsters… This is probably…” (Slave Dealer)
I forgot to tell him not to take annoying action on his own.
If I don’t do anything about him, then Filo Rial Queens will continue to be mass produced.
He received some eggs from the Queen, and got more from this Merchant.
I need to get back to the village quickly!
“The ownership rights can be annulled by you yourself so there shouldn’t be a problem. The Hero of the Spear said he was going to the Hero of the Shield’s place.” (Slave Dealer)
… The Queen said that as well. What does he plan on doing there?
Even taking an army of Filo Rials with him…
This is serious. I need some drastic countermeasures.
“Got it. I’m going back to my village! ‘Cya!” (Naofumi)
“What should I should I do about finding you slaves? Yes.” (Slave Dealer)
“Please continue as before.” (Naofumi)
“I understand. Yes.” (Slave Dealer)
I care not for that at the moment. I run out of the tent and summon a portal.
Ah, I forgot. The Queen said it seemed like Motoyasu’s followers had Class Upped.
I return to the village and quickly scan the surroundings.
Good. Motoyasu isn’t here yet.
I need to prepare for when he gets here.
Now that I think about it, the one who will be doing the work will be Motoyasu. I have no part in it.
Perhaps he opted for joint ownership to get my status boosts.
If he builds up forces, he may oppose me but I don’t think that Firoholic will do such a thing.
No. If he takes action on his own I’ll be troubled, but as long as I get Firo to tell him when he gets here… it should be fine!
“Hey, Naofumi. Do you know what’s going on?” (Ren)
Before I realized it, Ren was in front of me.
“What is it?” (Naofumi)
“I don’t know. There seems to be something going on outside the village. I can’t leave, though.” (Ren)
“Yeah. I can only see from afar, but… Isn’t that Motoyasu?” (Ren)
It suddenly feels like my blood temperature has dropped..
Ren, and Female Knight both stare towards the outskirts of the village… Where we built the Firo Rial Stable.
The slaves seem to be gathered there.
I timidly approach the area.
“Ah, Niichan- wow! Your clothes are amazing!” (Kiel)
Kiel looks at me, and jumps back at the sight of my clothes.
I don’t think I’ve worn my Barbarian Armor since I first established the village.
For me, this clothing is normal, though.
“Don’t mind it.” (Naofumi)
“No… I can’t. Niichan, are you in to that sort of clothing?” (Kiel)
“I don’t know whether I like or hate it, but it’s abilities are high, and it was made by someone who treats me well.” (Naofumi)
“Is that so?” (Kiel)
I’d like to move on from this topic already.
What is happening in the Filo Rial stable!
“I just got back. What’s happening?” (Naofumi)
“I think it was right after Niichan left. Or perhaps before that? It seems there were intruders in the stable.” (Kiel)
“I-I see.” (Naofumi)
“We were deliberating how to drive them out, but because Niichan wasn’t here, we didn’t want to take action yet…” (Kiel)
“Yes, Sadina-san isn’t here either, and when we sent someone to ask Melty-chan in the neighboring village, we got a report saying Firo didn’t want to come here no matter what.” (Atlas)
The bad feeling in my chest begins to encompass more parts of my body.
Motoyasu is definitely here.
“What should we do?” (Atlas)
“L-let me go confirm the situation there.” (Naofumi)
Perhaps I can talk to him.
I carefully walk up to the Filo Rial stable and put my hand on the large door.
I can hear some noises coming from the inside.
Firo should only have one follower right now. I did plan on getting more in the future though.
What is this? My blood goes cold again.
Every single instinct in my body is telling me not to open this door.
But putting this problem off won’t solve anything.
I muster up my courage and swing the door open.
The inside of the building was pitch black.
No… that’s wrong. There are too many Filo Rials, and all outside light is blocked.
“Ah, the scent of Filo Rials… Sniff. Sniff.” (Motoyasu)
Right before my eyes, Motoyasu was embracing a Filo Rial Queen, and taking in her scent.
Surrounding him is a large flock of Queens.
I hear the sounds of feathers ruffling as all heads turn to face me.
I’m surrounded by eyes.
“”Who is it?”” (Filo Rials)
“Ah, I think he was the Master Moto-kun was talking about.” (Filo Rial)
“Right. His eyes look mean, but he somehow looks nice.” (Filo Rial)
“Yeah. That must be it.” (Filo Rial)
“I get you man. Somehow looking at him makes me feel motivated.” (Filo Rial)
“Right, right. The feeling he gives of is different than Motopi.” (Filo Rial)
Goosebumps break out all over my body.
““Master! Let’s play!”” (Filo Rials)
I immediately slam the door and run.
A few seconds later the door opens once more. I look back and am confronted with the terrifying sight of a flock of Filo Rials gaining on me.
“MOTOYASUUUUU! GET OUTTTTT!” (Naofumi)
My heartless cry echoes through the village.
By the way, my salvation came in the form of Firo, who mustered up her courage and came to check the situation out. I now owe her one.
I won’t say what sort of things happened to me until she came to my aid.